POSTED: Wednesday, October 24, 2012 - 12:45pm
UPDATED: Wednesday, October 24, 2012 - 12:49pm
Louisiana (NBC33) — The results of Pennington Biomedical Research Center’s annual Louisiana Report Card on Physical Activity & Health for Children & Youth have been released, and things aren’t looking too good for the health of today’s youth.
The 2012 report card reveals that the overall heath grade for youth in the state is a “D”.
The report focused on the state’s “built environment” and how it impacts the health of the youth in Louisiana. This built environment refers to manmade features of the community, including everyday things such as streets, shops, restaurants, and parks.
Louisiana ranks lower than the national average in the four categories that Pennington uses to figure out a neighborhood’s ability to encourage good health – when the built environment lacks access to parks, playgrounds, sidewalks and fresh food options, both the mental and physical wellness of children is affected.
The report card provides results that can also guide parents to making active decisions for their children.
For instance, the survey found that 70 percent of Louisiana parents believe either poor diet or a lack of physical activity is the primary cause of childhood obesity. Yet, more than 34.5 percent of students exceeded the recommended amount of screen time, both television and computer, by approximately an hour; and only 5.9 percent of high school students are eating the recommended amount of fruits and vegetables daily.
The grade includes indicators including physical activity, screen time, sports participation, overweight and obesity, aerobic fitness, overall physical and emotional well-being, fruit and vegetable consumption, tobacco use, physical activity programming at school, training of school personnel in physical activity.